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Blooming Bluebells

This showy spring ephemeral is a sought-after sight for wildflower fans

Here's How To Create A Healthy Bat Habitat in Your Yard — And Why You Should

Most of us try to avoid bats, but creating a welcoming habitat for them may be beneficial.

A Plant That Does What It's Told? Obedient Plant Isn't Just a Misnomer

The name obedient plant may seem like a misnomer, but the flowers of this plant can be turned in any direction and will stay in place once moved.

Snakes in the Water? Don't Worry; They're Not After You

Learn more about the northern water snake, one of the most common water snakes in Illinois.

Great Blue: The Granddaddy of Herons

Called 'great blue' because of its unique size and blue-gray feathers, the great blue heron is also one of the most highly adaptable creatures of its species.

Unsavory Squirrel Steals Cookie, Attacks Police Officer

In the end, the law won the squirrel battle.

Five Fascinating Facts About Coyotes

Coyotes are incredibly smart and adaptable. But how much do you really know about these generally reclusive animals that are afraid of humans?

Quiz: Are You a Bald Eagle Expert?

Test your knowledge to see how much you really know about these amazing birds.

Watch This Bison Do a 'Happy Dance' on the First Day of Spring

This bison probably has better moves than you.

Nature Curiosity: What Happens to the Animals During a Prescribed Burn?

What happens to animals during a prescribed burn? Most are able to safely escape the flames. In fact, these burns are designed specifically to minimize injury and death to animals and, as a result, create healthier habitats for them.

Creature Feature: The Powerful Snapping Turtle

The snapping turtle isn't hunted by many animals, but it does face many risks in the wild, including being hit by cars and having their nests hunted.

Steeling Joliet's Past

The ruins that remain near Columbia Street tell a story of the city's century-old melting pot.

Vermont Cemetery: From Human History to Natural History

The 37-acre preserve contains a one-acre portion of the site was dedicated as an Illinois Nature Preserve and is the final resting place of the early settlers of Wheatland Township.

Hammel Woods: A Miller's Tale

Tucked away at the southern tip of Hammel Woods, near the small dam across the DuPage River, is Grinton Grove, the site that William Grinton built a flour mill in 1845. The small settlement that arose around it was the origin of today’s Village of Shorewood.

Keep Your Eyes Peeled for These Unusual Plants in the Preserves

From cactus to carnivorous plants, there are some surprises in the preserves

Slowing Water's Roll

One of the benefits of preserving open space is the amount of water the preserves hold, which helps sustain wildlife habitats, reduces flooding and replenishes underground aquifers.

What's the Difference?: Dragonfly vs. Damselfly

Is that big, buzzing insect a dragonfly or a damselfly? Learn how to tell the difference.

Avoid these plants to save yourself from painful rashes, blindness – even death

Here’s a closer look at some of the plants that can cause you harm and are best avoided.

D.C. Duck Ramp Proves Sometimes Nature Just Needs a Boost

They took to it like a duck to water, naturally.

From Tracks to Trails

The District has repurposed abandoned rail lines to recreational trails

Time to Talk Turkey

Once extinct in Illinois, wild turkeys can now be found in every county.

Wonderfully Wild Snakes of Will County

The slither. They climb. They freak people out. But don't worry, the locals are harmless.

When Bald Eagles Go Fishing, It's Quite a Catch

Bald eagles are some of most beautiful birds you'll see — and thankfully still can — now that they've bounced back after conservation efforts helped them come back from the brink of extinction.

What’s in a Name?

When it comes to the preserves, it's often a connection to the past.

Avoid dehydration and heat illnesses with these tips

Stay hydrated and avoid heat illnesses during the dog days of summer with these tips.

Quiz: Are You A Water Snake Expert?

Find out by answering these 10 questions.

What's the Difference: Chipmunk vs. Ground Squirrel

Is that a chipmunk or a ground squirrel scurrying around your yard in preparation for winter? Learn how to tell the difference between these two similar-looking rodents.

Quiz: Are You an Authority on Raccoons?

Find out by answering these 10 questions.

Turtle Hit by Car in Morris Lives on Through Hatchlings

Turtle hit by car in Morris lives on through surviving hatchlings that have been placed in a Blanding's turtle recovery program.

Orioles Are a Sweet Spring Treat

Enjoy them while you can — because they'll be gone before you know it

Winter Seeding Leads to Spring Sprouts

The cold-weather seed distribution of around 350 different plant species is scheduled for 14 preserves throughout Will County.

'Don't Be A Jerk' Campaign Takes to the Water

While jerks out in the preserves can cause a number of problems for normal, everyday visitors, jerks on the water can be even more problematic.

Quiz: Are You Savvy About Queen Snakes?

Can you ace this 10-question quiz?

What's the Difference?: Sharp-shinned Hawk vs. Cooper's Hawk

Can't tell the difference between a Cooper's hawk and a sharp-shinned hawk? You're not alone. These two birds are strikingly similar in appearance, but there's a few things to look for to help tell them apart.

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